Metta and thoughts for you.
She may be right for it is not easy to forget someone that you had lived with for over 40 years of your life.
Please do not try and forget you mother, this is not a good thing for a number of reason. To succeed in that you have to control your mind 24/7 and you can not do that. Your mother was clearly the most important thing in your life (equally you in hers). The idea is more one of putting things in perspective and this you can only do by being mindful of what is occurring. suppressing memories and emotions is not going to work and can be harmful to you. As a carer you learnt to focus all of you physical and emotional resources on the person you were looking after - you know have to learnt to focus them on yourself.
Grief is a process and for each individual it is different. At the moment the emotion that fills you is a sense of loss but that loss is more than just for your mother. One of the adjustments that this process needs to encompass is that you have also lost a major role in your life. Caring for others with compassion and love becomes a major part of you and you also grieve for that. If you can succeed in extending that loving kindness outwards then this helps to deal with that loss. However as with metta in meditation it has to start with having loving kindness and compassion for yourself. At times the easiest way to see yourself is with a mirror and in this case your mother maybe the mirror that you should use. Your mother got to spend "over 40 years" with a loving daughter that managed to take care of her to the end. Do you know how rare this is - this is a very special gift that YOU gave to her.
The passing of a loved one is a time for so many mixed emotions and the intensity of those emotions is often dependent on the strength and proximity of the relationship. Some of the emotions that you can fell may appear wrong at the time, for example anger that you are the one left behind. I know from my own experience and with the opportunity to reflect on the events how profound this can be.
To live with some one for many years takes a lot of love, to allow them to pass on takes even more love. I learnt this lesson the hard way. I had promised my wife that if her disease affect her brain that i would let her go. Maybe 24 hours before she died i found that i could not and got her to the hospital. It was only then that realized that i needed to find even more love for her. As it turned out it was a good things because i was able to manipulate her medications in such a way as to get her 2 days with a clear mind to say goodbye to our kids and she passed in to unconsciousness reliving the visit of our only grandchild. I have since learnt how what a good passing she had, you will realize that what you did for you mum was equally as good.
There is a price that people pay for being a carer - it is something that i call carers syndrome. When you care for someone in a home environment you take on aspects of the disease and its effects. As peoples health decline their mobility and social interactions also decline. As the primary carer the same thing happens to you so those same factors affect you health. Just as Buddha in the 4NT identified our suffering and causes he also identified that there was a logical way to address the problem. In this case it also involves a reversal of the process that caused the suffering in the first place.
I live in an apartment and everything here reminds me of my mom. What is helping me get through the grief and sadness is to go out and be among other people. When you are closed up in an environment that fuels the grief, sadness and memories it can really have a negative effect on your mind.
This i understand and it is why i said to try and attach as many positive memories to those things that that trigger the memories. Beyond that i have also said about the carer syndrome with one of the issues being social isolation that happens to both the recipient and giver of care. What you need to do is to seek a middle way (gee The Buddha was one smart man) You do need the social interaction for your health and well being but at the same time you need to ensure that you do not develop avoidance - because if you do you will miss out on all of the positive memories of your mum and what YOU did for her. The other problem with avoidance in this case is that you will miss out on the opportunity to develop within Buddhism.
Others have said about the potential benefits of a health diet, you quite rightly pointed out one of the potential dangers of diet. What i would suggest is that you (if you have not already) see a qualified dietitian with a proper background referral from you GP covering you thrombosis, depression, borderline diabetes and significant recent life events.
I agree exercise could be of assistance to you in helping to manage your grief, depression, diabetes concerns and potential you cardiovascular issues. I don't need to caution you about the potential dangers of falls and injuries give the blood thinners you are on.